1 / 10       © Ernst Haas, Surtsey Volcano, 1971. From the exhibition The Creation.
2 / 10       © Ernst Haas, Motion Flower, 1971. From the exhibition The Creation.
3 / 10       During the visit to the exhibition The Creation by Ernst Haas. © Stefania Biamonti/FPmag.
4 / 10       © Kenro Izu, India, 2011. From the exhibition Sacredness.
5 / 10       © Kenro Izu, Varanasi, India, 2014. From the exhibition Sacredness.

6 / 10       During the visit to the exhibition Sacredness by Kenro Izu. © Stefania Biamonti/FPmag.

7 / 10       © Aurelio Amendola, Basilica of San Pietro. The Pietà by Michelangelo, 1998. From the exhibition San Pietro.
8 / 10       © Aurelio Amendola, Basilica of San Pietro, 1998. From the exhibition San Pietro.
9 / 10       During the visit to the exhibition San Pietro by Aurelio Amendola. © Stefania Biamonti/FPmag.
10 / 10       During the visit to the exhibition Man, Mountains and the Sea by Rony Zakaria, winner of the Roberto Del Carlo Photolux Award 2015.

One morning at the Ducal Palace

There is a sleepy atmosphere in the streets of Lucca. It is Sunday morning after all. The sun invades the semi desert streets with a cold winter light, giving a break to the cold of November that comes back on hands and faces in every shadow. I look at the map. The Ducal Palace is not very far away. I stop to quickly think about what to do and I decide that my second day at the Photolux Festival will start exactly from there.
Once arrived at Cortile Carrara, I find a majestic building in front of me. I go up the stairs until I reach the floor of the exhibitions. Once inside, Aurelio Amendola’s exhibition is waiting for me. From the black exhibitive surfaces emerge prints of average and big sizes depicting full, partial views and details of the St. Peter's Basilica. The visual impact is very powerful and the quality of the print allows appreciating every single detail captured by the author with a vibrant black and white. It is a good style exercise but personally, nothing more than that. I move to the second room. Once I enter, the look expands. The room is very spacious and the light grey surfaces where the images of Kenro Izu are shown, for the exhibition Sacredness, only partially hide the majestic frescos that are underneath. The contrast between the minimalism of Izu’s photography and the richness of colours and characters that lay underneath them is astonishing. I focus on the itinerary; and let myself be guided by the eye of the author in the presence of places filled with sacredness. India, as told by Izu, is a country dominated by silent and subtle atmospheres, and populated by people that live their spirituality with great dignity. It brings to one’s mind words such as inner peace, essence and awareness. I leave the room with a nice sensation of wellbeing and I find myself immersed among plum walls. I enter the area dedicated to the work of Rony Zaccaria, the winner of the Roberto Del Carlo Photolux Award 2015. This project investigates the deep spiritual link that, in Indonesia, unifies men and nature. The images show sacred rituals, local traditions and the fury of the elements that the inhabitants try to dominate through ritual practices. It is a fragmentary and not completed story – few additional captions on top of the introductory text would have helped to explain –, but it is indeed well organised. I leave Indonesia to enter the first room designed to the exhibition The Creation by Ernst Haar, taken from the homonym book from 1971. The rooms are three in total: in the first one the generating strength of nature is shown, in the second flowers and trees and in the third the variety of animal species. It is a clear concept, and the link to the biblical story of The Creation in the Genesis is obvious. Nevertheless, while I walk through the rooms, I feel bored and unsatisfied. «Is it all?», I ask myself. Faced with a famous work, that founded a new approach in his field, I find the itinerary mostly rhetorical and the selection debatable. Moreover, while Haar’s style emerges in the first part of the exhibition, it vacillates in the second part, and I have few doubts that it has been the same hand to have taken the pictures. The itinerary stops here. I realised I have yet to visit the room dedicated to JH Engström and Viktoria Wojciechowska, winners of the Leica Oskar Barnack Award 2015. I must go back. Luckily it is not very crowded and I manage to walk around easily. Once I arrive at destination, I understand why it did not strike me to start with. The room is so small that it does not allow a decent framing and the selection of images exhibited is so limited that I can only partially read the works, despite a summary in video being projected on one of the three available walls. The projects seem good, but what I see does not allow me to from a complete opinion on the matter.
I get out of Ducal Palace with contrasting feelings. The sun is high but the streets are still quite desert. It is lunchtime after all… [ S. B. ]

- - -

THE CREATION by Ernst Haas
SACREDNESS by Kenro Izu
SAN PIETRO by Aurelio Amendola
MAN, MOUNTAINS AND THE SEA by Rony Zakaria
TOUT VA BIEN by JH Engström
SHORT FLASHES by Wiktoria Wojciechowska
Palazzo Ducale | 21 November - 13 December 2015
admission fee: 10,00 €

– – –

[ INTERNAL RESOURCES ]
Photolux 2015: the exhibitions
[ video ] Sacred and Profane: interview with Enrico Stefanelli
Photolux 2015 on FPmag

[ EXTERNAL RESOURCES ]
Photolux Festival 2015

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published on 2015-12-06 in NEWS / EXHIBITIONS

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